Reports have circulated for weeks that this would be New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees’ final season.
The future Hall-of-Famer was asked bluntly if Sunday’s 30-20 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC Divisional Round would be his final game and declined to say whether or not it would be.
“I’m going to give myself an opportunity to think about the season, think about a lot of things, just like I did last year, and make a decision,” Brees said.
The NFL’s All-Time leader in passing yards said he wouldn’t share what would go into that decision but did say that Sunday’s game which saw him throw three interceptions and the Saints turn the ball over four times would not be a factor.
Brees said those turnovers were the deciding factor in the Saints’ season-ending loss.
“At the end of the day that’s what this game comes down to, is those turnovers,” he said. “Those gave them the ball deep in our territory and you can’t do that with that offense. They’re too good and they’re going to capitalize on that.”
The Buccaneers were able to turn those turnovers into 21 points. Two of the turnovers took place in the fourth quarter and allowed Tampa Bay to seal the game.
The loss mark the end of Brees’ 20th NFL season and one where he battled several forms of adversity including multiple fractured ribs and a collapsed lung that held him out of three games. Despite the struggles the 42-year-old said he had no regrets about playing this season.
“I’ve always tried to play this game with a great respect, with a great reverence for it,” he said. “And I appreciate all that this game has given to me. There are obviously so many incredible memories. So many incredible relationships that have come as a result of playing this game.
“You find out so much about yourself and you fight through so much when you play this game. And I’d say, this season, I probably had to fight through more than I’ve had to in any other season of my career, from injury to all the COVID stuff to the crazy circumstances. Man, it was worth every moment of it.”